United States of America is a great country to be, it’s almost everyone’s dream country. Due to it’s great economy, advanced educational system, infrastructures and technology advancement.

Many Nigerians grab the slightest opportunity to go to the US but there are more to living in another man’s country, considering that there wouldn’t be any family member or friends, few people make research on what the country is, cost of living there and even on how to cope there.

There are certain essentials people barely know before traveling to the US to study, some of it are:

  1. There are restrictions to work and study: The US student’s visa only allows you to work on-campus up to 20 hours per week when school is in session and up to 40 hours per week when school is on break.

On-campus employment is a work that takes place on campus, or at an off-campus location that is affiliated with the school. Which could be working in a university bookstore, cafeteria or other facilities where students can help.

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To get this type of job, you need to apply 30 days before lectures begin. To be able to apply as well, you need to talk to your designated school officer (DSO). If you are approved, your DSO will provide you with a letter of approval, that will be needed to get a Social Security Number (SSN).

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  1. Health insurance is compulsory: For every international student in US, health insurance is mandatory. As a matter of fact you will be unable to register for classes if you can’t provide proof of your health insurance. It can be gotten from the school or you can get one yourself.
  2. There are two admission intake periods in a year: There are two intakes the fall and the spring. The Fall Intake starts in August and has the highest number of courses available. It is also the favorite season for international students. While the Spring intake starts January, when students who missed the fall intake in USA can choose to study, but not all courses will be available.
  3. Not all Universities require TOEFL or IELTS:
    Not all US universities require TOEFL or IELTS exam result for postgraduate students. But in such cases, the student would be expected to have taken their previous education in English.
  4. There are lots of scholarships to apply for: Tuition fee in the US is way above the means of many students, it’s only fair that there’s a way around. US universities have some of the highest scholarship offers especially for international students. Most fund all of the tuition while some fund part of it. Fulbright Foreign Students Program is one of the fully funded scholarships.
  5. After graduation you have 60 days to leave or enroll in another program:
    As an international student, you have 60 days after graduation to either enroll in another college program for further studies or enroll in an Optional Practical Training program to gain employment after you graduate from college on an F-1 visa. If this does not take place within 60 days you will have to leave the US.

Being prepared to travel is not just about having the money or getting other things sorted out. The major thing to do before traveling is making adequate research. Especially places you have never been to. I hope you learnt something from this article.

Thank you for reading.

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